26th Apr 2017
Stephen Jones has been named as the first chief executive of UK Finance, a new trade association that will absorb six existing bodies, including the British Bankers' Association and the Council of Mortgage Lenders. It is due to launch this summer.
Jones has worked in finance for nearly 30 years, in a wide range of roles for companies including Santander, Barclays, Citigroup and Schroders. One of his main tasks will be to help restore trust in the banking industry, which was badly damaged by the global economic crisis of 2007-08.
He said: “I am excited to be joining UK Finance at this formative time, and believe that the expertise and reach of the constituent organisations will be deepened by coming together. We will serve our members by helping them build a more customer-focused and innovative finance and banking sector for the benefit of the UK economy as a whole.”
The launch of UK Finance comes at a time when the public perception of banks is gradually improving. The Institute of Customer Service’s most recent UK Customer Satisfaction Index (UKCSI) found that customer satisfaction in the Banks & Building Societies sector is at its highest point in nine years, scoring 79.5 out of 100. This is 1.5 points higher than last year, making it the second most improved sector compared with a year ago.
The UKCSI also found compelling evidence of tangible links between customer satisfaction and trust: 96 per cent of customers who gave a nine out of ten for customer satisfaction also gave the highest ratings for trust, compared to 48 per cent of those who scored an eight out of ten. So if Jones can make good on his promise to make the industry more customer-focused, there is a real opportunity for banks to win back public trust.